December 18

Fly out of Boston!  Plane delayed in Boston so must run through airport to catch plane in Chicago. But arrive safely in Portland early afternoon, very happy to be home.  Notice snow on ground – pretty!

December 19

Get up early (stupid time change), decide to rake leaves in yard.  Snow starts falling, but glad to have brought snow boots and mittens.  Tired & cold, decide CoffeeBoy can put them in the containers.  Roads are clear and see on tomorrow is okay too.  Decide to drive around Portland for Christmas gifts, groceries, etc.  Get back to house to take nap, notice the roads are freezing up and cars slipping around outside.  But see on weather that it shouldn’t be that bad tomorrow morning so can drive to Mom’s house 2 hours south.

December 20

Wake up to lots of snow falling.  Road outside covered.  Decide to wait on driving to mom’s.  Order pizza since didn’t really buy much for groceries.  Wind starts blowing & snows harder, way too cold to go outside even to catch bus to friends house.  Notice snow has covered piles of leaves.  But this is Portland, it will melt by tomorrow.  Spend day inside, only amusement is a radio with one speaker, Blackberry and 1 Iron Chef DVD that had decided to bring on a whim.  At least will be able to finish knitting Christmas presents! Watch video that night, go to bed early, hope snow is gone.

December 21

Snow is not gone.  Wind is not gone.  Snow is still falling.  Not going to Mom’s today.  Try to explain to mom and sister that the snow is piling up a lot in Portland even though it’s fine where they are. Fail.  Do not think they believe me.  Get restless, decide to walk to see if anything open.  Only thing open is dive bar at end of road and minimart.  Buy some stuff at minimart.  Come back home.  Drive each other crazy with cabin fever.  Decide to go to dive bar to get out of house, watch TV and drink heavily.  Watch news, see that it is not going to get better for a couple of days. Biggest snow storm in 30 years.  Feel trickle of worry of not getting to Mom’s for Christmas.  Go home, go to bed.

December 22

Snow still there.  Snow still falling, car buried.  Try to explain on call with work people in Boston and Denver that even if a foot of snow isn’t much to them, Portland does not have equipment to clear roads.   Fail. Decide to buy train ticket for that night instead. Trains always run!  Happy to get out of house, decide we should at least go downtown early.  Train station calls as about to leave.  All trains canceled.  City buses canceled too.  Feel despair.  Cry in frustration.  Sulk.  CB wisely leaves to go back to dive bar.  Do not want to go back there.  Pout.  Decide am being ridiculous, call train station to change ticket.  Only ticket is for tomorrow night at 9 pm.  Take it.  Walk a very cold 15 blocks to supermarket, rent movies, buy groceries.  Make cupcakes to amuse self, watch movies, and knit.  Am actually getting tired of knitting.  Go to bed.

December 23

Snow still there.  Not snowing though, and cold winds have all but stopped.  Think at least main roads are clear, maybe can drive out.  Spend 3 hours digging car out of snow.


Fail.  CB goes to check main roads, no way little car will make it out.  Worry trains will be canceled again but decide have to get out of house.  Take bus to down town, normally a 30 minute journey.  Instead takes 3 hours and includes waiting in snow for bus for an hour, bus getting stuck in snow drift, bus then throwing a chain.  But make it to internet cafe, trains are running.  Have a nice dinner, get to train station at 8 to make train.  See previous train hasn’t even left yet.  9pm train delayed to 10:30

Train delayed to 10:40

Train delayed to 11:00

Train delayed to 11:15

Finally get on train at 11:30.  Arrive at 2 am, poor mom & BIL waiting.  Amazed at the lack of snow.

December 24

All trains & buses from Portland are sold out.  BIL will drive up and pick up CB in Portland instead, as he has chains & used to driving in snow.  BIL leaves at 11am.  Spend day shopping with mom, hanging out with sister & kids.  BIL & CB do not arrive until 7pm.  But very thankful & happy to be around loved ones.  Christmas Eve always favourite day of the year.  Have a fun night with family playing Guitar Hero with everyone.

December 25

Everyone pleased with knitted gifts.  Play lots of Wii games, relaxing.  CB wants to go back to Portland to spend Christmas night with friends.  Leave to take him to catch bus at 6:30.  Bus is late.  Bus may not show up.  Several buses show up, not Portland one.  Finally bus shows up at 7:30, send him on his way.

December 26-28

Relax with family.  Go to thrift stores, play with kids, eat lots of food, play lots of Sims & Guitar Hero with sister.  Find in box of old childhood things one of favourite books The Long Winter by Lauran Ingalls Wilder.  Reread it, realize did not have it that bad when snowbound for 4 days.

December 29

CB decides to rent car, comes to pick me up to take me back to Portland. No snow on ground.  Happy to at least spend a couple of days enjoying Portland before heading back to MA.